The Up to Date College Library

An article in Voice of America discusses changes to campus library design.

Here for example is the Rain Garden Reading Lounge inside the Hunt Library at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC: Light & airy with a coupla books.

Synchronized Shelving in New Zealand

Ohio State professor reflects on her passion for comic books

As she spends her days surrounded by more than 300,000 original cartoons, 45,000 books and 2.5 million comic strip clippings and tear sheets, Caitlin McGurk is living her dream. McGurk, 30, serves as visiting curator for Ohio State University’s Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum – she’s also an assistant professor – a result of her lifelong passion for comics, coupled with hard work and perseverance. BTN.com recently spoke with McGurk about her role, the museum itself, and her thoughts on the future of the comics industry.
From Ohio State professor reflects on her passion for comic books: BTN LiveBIG « Big Ten Network

Committee reviewing books pulled from summer reading list in Chesterfield VA

The decision to pull books from a summer reading list in Chesterfield County after parents complained that they were laden with sexually explicit language and violence has drawn the attention of a state senator and criticism from national free-speech advocacy groups.
From Committee reviewing books pulled from summer reading list in Chesterfield - Richmond Times-Dispatch: Chesterfield County News
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The lost infrastructure of social media

More than a decade ago, the earliest era of blogging provided a set of separate but related technologies that helped the nascent form thrive. Today, most have faded away and been forgotten, but new incarnations of these features could still be valuable.
From The lost infrastructure of social media. — Medium
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How the New York Public Library made ebooks open, and thus one trillion times better

Richardson's system actually works: they're using it in NYPL and many affiliated libraries. It makes reading ebooks from the library one trillion times better, and it lets anyone improve it, at anywhere in the stack -- it lets commercial suppliers play, too, but prevents them from locking libraries, publishers or readers in. It is a model of how mission-driven public agencies and nonprofits can be truly game-changing in online ecosystems that have been dominated by a single, monolithic corporation.
From How the New York Public Library made ebooks open, and thus one trillion times better / Boing Boing
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Keep the Patrons Happy

Some Good Customer service "precepts" by Paula Laurita via Pub-Lib

Okay, my number one rule is no blood in the library. But aside from that I have a few general rules:

2. We don't work at the "no" factory. The first response isn't "we can't do that". Try and find the "yes" if possible without infringing on another patron. Some staff took this at first that we never say no. That's not a blanket yes to more computer time if someone else is waiting. It's not a blanket yes to extending a summer reading book when there is a holds list. But, is there really a reason why someone cannot have a special check-out period for Huck Finn while they are sailing on the Mississippi?

3. Take the money. Cousin Fred checked out a book using Cousin Beatrice's card. Fred racked-up the late fines, but doesn't have Beatrice's card. He wants to pay the fines. Take the money. Give Fred the cash register receipt. Save the account receipt for Beatrice. Don't inconvenience them both.

4. This isn't the cosmetics counter at the local department store. Don't chase people to make the sale. "May I help you find anything?" "No, I'm just browsing." "Okay, if I can help please let me know." Give people privacy and the gift of time to look.

5. No weltschmerz. Well thought out complaints are fine. General whining is not.

Tracking Excavator: Uncovering Tracking in the Web's Past

As users browse the web, their browsing behavior may be observed and aggregated by third-party websites ("trackers") that they don't visit directly. These trackers are generally embedded by host websites in the form of advertisements, social media widgets (e.g., the Facebook "Like" button), or web analytics platforms (e.g., Google Analytics). Though web tracking and its privacy implications have received much attention in recent years, that attention has come relatively recently in the history of the web and lacks full historical context. In this work, we conduct a longitudinal archaeological study of tracking on the web from 1996 to 2016. Our key insight: that the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine enables a retrospective analysis of properties of the web, even though researchers did not anticipate in advance the need to study these properties over time. We evaluate the potential and limitations of the Wayback Machine for this purpose and offer strategies to overcome several challenges we encountered in relation to using its data to study tracking.
From Tracking Excavator
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The origins of children’s literature - The British Library

By the end of the 18th century, children’s literature was a flourishing, separate and secure part of the publishing industry in Britain. Perhaps as many as 50 children’s books were being printed each year, mostly in London, but also in regional centres such as Edinburgh, York and Newcastle. By today’s standards, these books can seem pretty dry, and they were often very moralising and pious. But the books were clearly meant to please their readers, whether with entertaining stories and appealing characters, the pleasant tone of the writing, or attractive illustrations and eye-catching page layouts and bindings.
From The origins of children’s literature - The British Library

Library custodian who pilfered books after hours sentenced to probation

A woman who worked as a custodian at Krause Memorial Library apologized for taking dozens of books, games and CDs, saying she never intended to hurt the Rockford library. “I feel bad for doing that to the library,’’ 33-year-old Sarah Lynn Fifelski told a judge at sentencing Tuesday. “I was grateful for the opportunity of working there and I feel bad for betraying their trust.
From Library custodian who pilfered books after hours sentenced to probation | WZZM13.com
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Removal of Confederacy books opens debate; director calls it routine process

The Danville Public Library has spent the past two years purging its collection of worn, duplicate and rarely checked-out books. That hasn’t prevented the library’s director from receiving complaints from at least one resident convinced that books on the Confederacy are being targeted for removal. Residents have also criticized the library’s actions on Facebook. Danville Public Library Director Joe Zappacosta said the library has not set out to remove books on the Civil War and the Confederacy.
From Removal of Confederacy books opens debate; director calls it routine process | Danville | godanriver.com
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Three new e-books written by JK Rowling appear on multiple bookseller websites

Now, three new e-books set in the fantastical world are reportedly set to be release. While Rowling hasn’t officially announced the releases, Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble and Apple's US iBook store have all listed three E-Books, written by the author about the world of Harry Potter.
From Harry Potter: Three new e-books written by JK Rowling appear on multiple bookseller websites
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'Treasure trove' of 5,500 films will be made accessible by Halifax Public Libraries

Thousands of hard-to-find films will be saved for the public as an iconic rental store gets set to close.  Halifax Public Libraries and Dalhousie University said Tuesday they will buy the films from Halifax's Video Difference. "To have parts of that collection live on and be available for the public is really part of the lasting legacy of Video Difference," Halifax Public Libraries chief librarian and CEO Asa Kachan said in an interview.
From Video Difference film collection being bought by Halifax Public Libraries, Dalhousie - Nova Scotia - CBC News
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Library use in England fell dramatically over last decade, figures show

The Department of Culture, Media and Sport has measured the public’s usage of libraries in England since 2005. In the 12 months to March 2016, it reported that just 33.4% of adults had used a public library, compared with 48.2% of adults in 2005/2006, when the survey began. This marks a drop of 30.7% over the decade, and is the first time the government department has highlighted a “significant decrease” in the proportion of adults who used public libraries. In comparison, the proportion of adults visiting heritage sites, museums and galleries increased over the decade.
From Library use in England fell dramatically over last decade, figures show | Books | The Guardian
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IFLA Trend Report Update For 2016

In 2013, the IFLA Trend Report identified five high level trends which are in the process of transforming our global information environment. These evolving developments spanned access to information, education, privacy, new forms of digital engagement and technological transformation. Deliberately conceived to embody more than a stationary snapshot of detected trends, the IFLA Trend Report was designed to serve as a catalyst for wider discussion, analysis and action across the international library community. Key themes and questions • Re-envisioning library services and the future role of libraries • Does the digital disruption of education present new opportunities? • Libraries need to play a physical and digital role in their communities • How can libraries communicate their achievements more effectively? • Learners still need a blend of digital and face-to-face environments • How can librarians embrace innovation without replacing themselves?
From Update 2016 | IFLA Trend Report
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Librarians Continue Disappearing From Chicago Schools

In 2012, Chicago Public Schools had 454 librarian positions in the budget. That dropped to 313 in 2013 and 252 in 2014. Last year there were 217 library positions in the budget. This year, there are just 160 librarians budgeted. “Less than 300 librarians was crazy,” Wiltse said. “We were pretty confident that that was a low point that really needed attention and needed correcting. And now, here we are.”
From Librarians Continue Disappearing From Chicago Schools | WBEZ
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Will Reading Romance Novels Make Artificial Intelligence More Human?

This past spring, Google began feeding its natural language algorithm thousands of romance novels in an effort to humanize its “conversational tone.” The move did so much to fire the collective comic imagination that the ensuing hilarity muffled any serious commentary on its symbolic importance. The jokes, as they say, practically wrote themselves. But, after several decades devoted to task-specific “smart” technologies (GPS, search engine optimization, data mining), Google’s decision points to a recovered interest among the titans of technology in a fully anthropic “general” intelligence, the kind dramatized in recent films such as Her (2013) and Ex Machina (2015). Amusing though it may be, the appeal to romance novels suggests that Silicon Valley is daring to dream big once again.
From Will Reading Romance Novels Make Artificial Intelligence More Human? | JSTOR Daily
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Welcome to The Last Bookstore

Great video of the owner of LA's Last Bookstore (11 & 1/2 minutes but worth it)

To Your Brain, Audiobooks Are Not ‘Cheating’

This question — whether or not listening to an audiobook is “cheating” — is one University of Virginia psychologist Daniel Willingham gets fairly often, especially ever since he published a book, in 2015, on the science of reading. (That one was about teaching children to read; he’s got another book out next spring about adults and reading.) He is very tired of this question, and so, recently, he wrote a blog post addressing it. (His opening line: “I’ve been asked this question a lot and I hate it.”) If, he argues, you take the question from the perspective of cognitive psychology — that is, the mental processes involved — there is no real difference between listening to a book and reading it. So, according to that understanding of the question: No, audiobooks are not cheating.
From To Your Brain, Audiobooks Are Not ‘Cheating’ -- Science of Us
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